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United States 7, Us 7, Ronald Reagan 5, America 4, Obama 2, Romney 2, C-span 2, Julian Castro 2, George W. Bush 2, Obamacare 2, Cuba 2, Britain 2, Washington 2, Dewhurst 1, Reagan 1, Mr. Murdoch 1, Marcion 1, Arne Duncan 1, Greg Debora 1, Castro 1,
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  CSPAN    Capitol Hill Hearings    News/Business.  

    September 27, 2012
    6:00 - 7:00am EDT  

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mayor julian castro would be the keynote speaker at the democratic national convention. following the in the footsteps of ann richards and barbara jordan but more crucially, barack obama, whose 2004 speech transformed him into a possible president of the united states. almost immediately before mayor -- mayor julian castro under the uttered the-- words menudo cookoff, speculation began. [laughter] from the moment he forced the lieutenant governor into a run off two months before it seemed likely if not certain that ted cruise -- ted cruz would emerge victorious and he did. almost immediately, speculation began about his own presidential future.
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they are too young, smart, ambitious, personable lawyers who can give a speech, a punch, as well as take a mayor captured just turned 38 pin he is a graduate of stanford university and harvard law school. he is a national co-chair of the obama-biden reelection campaign. mr. cruz is 41. he is a graduate of princeton university and harvard law previous work with chief justice william rehnquist, advised the bush-cheney campaign in 2000, work with the federal trade commission and the department of justice before serving as the nation's youngest solicitor general.
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but to have them both here today. [applause] the gentleman, thank you so much for being here. you both had quite a summer. mayor castor, let me ask you to reflect on this summer. -- mayor castro, let me ask you to reflect on this summer. >> first, a greenwich solutions for of and for a wonderful event. -- first, congratulation for evident for a wonderful event -- for evan for a wonderful event. it was like throwing a
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claustrophobic into a closet and then taking away the key. [laughter] i think what we have seen in historical cycle of some of what we saw in 2010 -- in this 2012 cycle is in some of what we saw in 2010. people are still committed to the fundamental ideals that make the nine states special, that make it a land of opportunity, that make it a believe the greatest country in the world. in the same time gun they are nervous. -- at the same time, they are
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nervous. it has been an exciting summer appeared i also learned that my daughter knows have to flip her hair. [laughter] >> she does. most famous child in america. the nation also learn you have a twin brother. they said that the democrats love julien castro so much, they have an extra one. [laughter] mr. cruz, where did you learn about yourself and what did you learn about the state of politics in this country? >> at the convention, i was just glad that i did not fall off stage. when i came out, the plan had been there would be a two- minute video. as happens at these conventions, they were running a bit late. they said okay, we will cancel
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the video. you had right on down and instead of just a clean stage, you had a podium and the teleprompter going down and there was literally a 15-foot tent going down behind me. >> were you surprised at the convention about anything you her saw? you have been pretty clear about your own views. but what did you hear? >> i thought the convention was fantastic. but the there was an energy on the ground. in terms of what i have learned and experienced in the last year-and-a-half, it truly has been -- the biggest thing in terms of our primary is that it was really a testament to the grassroots. in any other cycle, what
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happened in the republican primary could not have happened. in any ordinary year, the should have been a very easy lay down. we were out-spent three-one. when we started, i was a 2%. >> the primaries back in march. you may not be sitting here. >> thank god for small miracles. >> you published an opinion piece in "the wall street *" this week where you say that america is that a crisis point. can you explain that to? >> i think we are at a fiscal and economic cliff. i think we have pursued government spending programs that have created a debt that is out of control. at the convention come after talking, i went home to my hotel at 1:30 a.m. and i was looking on my iphone at twitter. and the comedian paula pound stone had sent a tweet that evening. i don't know her, but she said
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" ted cruz just said that, when his daughter was born, the debt was $5 trillion and now it is $16 trillion. what the heck did she do?" [laughter] >> you think the debt is putting the nation in crisis. >> along with government spending, is causing the dead. we have seen a growing expansion in the power of the federal government. it is crippling small businesses. >> you are the national co- chair of the obama-bided campaign. >> i would put the challenge that we have as a nation in a different context. and say that, to the extent that we are a nation in "crisis," although i would not describe it as that because i
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believe that we can fundamentally overcome this and that we can do it in a fairly rational and reasonable way, i think the challenges that we have now had more than a generation of folks who are not willing to ask americans to sacrifice and to be realistic about how we take on our biggest challenges. for instance, everyone remembers the republican debate where they asked whether you would take the bargain of one dollar's worth of tax increases or $10 worth of basically tax cuts and everybody raised their hands and said they would not accept that. we have become a country where -- it is not just one side, both sides, but more one side
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now than ever is not willing to be realistic about how we can tackle these challenges. if there is a crisis that i see in the united states for the long term, it is not the temporal issue of how we will deal with money. because i am very confident we will be able to deal with that. it is how will we bring that -- bring back our sense of what we can accomplish together as americans when we are realistic about those challenges. that is the thing i think about with the word "crisis" in this country. >> mayor castro is not the first to suggest that. for 10 years now, we heard that the government is not asking all of us to do enough. >> it is interesting. the word "sacrifice," when i hear a politician say that, it
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usually means grab your wallet. it usually means increasing taxes. and i will give president obama credit to in his the first presidential candidate since walter mondale to run explicitly on a platform that he will raise taxes. >> he is saying he will raise taxes on the wealthy. >> according to the supreme court, he already has raised taxes. that was the basis on which the supreme court of held obamacare, that it was a tax increase. >> to mayor castro's point, people who have more are being asked to sacrifice. you do not agree with that. >> i do not agree with that. but me say two things. if you look historically, such
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spding has been 20% of gdp. federal spending has been 18% of gdp. i think the problem is we're spending too much. in the last three years, federal spending has gone from 20% of gdp to 25% of gdp. that is a fundamental structural shift and it is produced -- it has produced record-setting deficits and putting us in a path of greece and where much of europe are. the economy is teetering on the edge of recession. the were seen can do is jacked up taxes on small businesses and entrepreneurs or job creators.
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that makes it all the more likely to push us into a recession. and for the 23 million people who struggling for work, the worst thing to do is hurt the small businesses that create those jobs. >> it is fair to say that the president has reduced taxes. he has reduced taxes for small businesses 18 times. he cut taxes for '95 -- for 95% of families out there. the question is do we ask everybody to sacrifice? when you look at the marginal rate in the united states, when ronald reagan took office, the marginal office with 71% to 72%. it is interesting to me that the greatness that people speak of in terms of the united states, when we talk about the 1940's, the 1950's, the 1960's, 1970's, the marginal rate that folks paid was much greater. nobody says we will go back to that. at the same time, during the clinton years, we had marginal rates that were a little bit higher than they are now and we had some of the best economic times that the country has ever
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seen. that is what i'm talking about. my concern for the country is that all of this heat has been generated around this issue instead of light and analysis and a sober look at the role that every american play, should play in strengthening our country. that is the concern i have in the long run. >> i want to pick up mr. cruz's suggestion that the economy is in trouble from -- is in trouble. texas has endured. but san antonio has had a tough couple of years. the census bureau report brought these numbers appeared between 2009 and 2011, unemployment in san antonio went up by more than a full point. needed household income has gone down. you know how tough the economy is. you're leaving a city that has been bearing some of the brunt. can you talk about that? few dispute that the economy is in a world of hurt? whoever's responsibility that
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is. >> i think every american would say that the economy is not where we wanted to be. but if you look nationally, there is no question that we have had 30 months of private- sector job growth. 4.6 million new jobs that were created during that time. at the same time, if we were to go right now to the archives of the university and pull out the front page headlines from four years ago and look at what was happening at this 0.4 years ago, where we were losing hundreds of thousands of jobs. in the month when president obama took office, we lost almost 800,000 jobs that month. there was talk of another depression at that time. whether we are talking about taxes or san antonio or anyplace, are we were we want to be? no. but are we better off than where we were? when we're talking about going into another depression and the
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banks collapsing and so on and so on? absolutely. there is no question in my mind. >> this question has become a part of his campaign. mayor castro makes the case that there have been 30 consecutive months of job growth. and when the president came into office, things were significantly worse now. would you like to take issue with this? >> right now, tragically, work- force participation is at the lowest rate it has been in 30 years. you mentioned john stuart been normally, you can get a barometer of where the country is by the late-night comics. >> i thought you said comics. [laughter] >> i will let even get into the midst of that. >> but letterman is getting older and we will have a vacant chair at some point.
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[laughter] >> so what did jay leno say. >> they went from 8.3% to 8.1% and the reason was that three and 60,000 people dropped out of the work force entirely, stop looking for work, which is the only reason the numbers went down. nearly 400,000 people give up hope they could find work. so obama has a strategy for re- election which is encouraging even more people to stop looking for what. >> but the question is not whether the and employment rate is 8.1% or 8.3%. the question is whether it is better than when the president took office? >> absolutely not. when you have the worst employment participation in 30
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years -- in the three and a half years of president obama tenure, gdp growth has been 1.5%. historically, for the last seven years, it has been 3.7%. we have had less than half the historical average pared by contrast, in 1984, gdp growth was 7.2% print what does that mean when the economy is growing, when small businesses are prospering? they are creating new jobs and people are able to find work. it creates opportunity for everyone. what we have unfortunately is small business after small business facing crushing uncertainty. the single biggest question you hear from business leaders is they don't know between obamacare and dodd-frank and the offshore drilling moratorium in texas.
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but entrepreneurs expressed to me is the sense of great uncertainty. what will the federal regulators do? and the president keep promising to raise everyone's taxes, which is causing small businesses to keep capital on the sidelines and not deploy it because they have so much uncertainty. >> i am not certain that the president is going to raise their once taxes. but you know what the growth rate was -- do a deal with the gdp growth rate was at the end of bush? >> no. [laughter] >> the 4.6 million new private- sector jobs created with this president is more than were created under george bush. you have a president who basically inherited one of the worst economies that this country has ever seen. of course, what will you do with a falling object? that object will fall and you have to pick up and the rise
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back up will be a little bit slower. what you have seen is that coming in the 30 months, 4.6 million new jobs, he has already created more jobs centers w. bush. this is a president who understands how to get the economy going and this election should be, between these two candidates, who actually has a plan about the future? given his record, i have more confidence that president obama can get that done than governor romney appeared >> -- then governor romney. >> right now, you're trying to get a sales tax increase to pay for pre-k. can you defend, sitting next to someone who does not like texas famously, the decision to brought to market with a tax increase even for something you so strongly believe in? many mayors are with you, but there are a lot of elected officials and san antonio who
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are not with you. >> basically, i fundamentally believe that brainpower is the currency of success. in the 21st century global economy. those communities that created will be the communities that thrive in our market economy. and those communities that do not will be the ones who fall behind. san antonio, i believe, needs to make a huge investment in education. that investment is not limited to more money. it also means getting parents involved. it also means expecting more from everybody along whole education ecosystem, from administrators to policy-makers to teachers come expecting more out of everyone. so what i have on the table in san antonio is basically a 1/8 cent sales tax that will cost the median household in the city $7.81 per year.
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mind you, every day in texas, it cost $359.81 to keep a juvenile incarceration. what we have on the table is the opportunity to educate more than 22,404-year-olds with -- 22,400 4-year-olds with high quality pre-k. >> i don't believe that taxes are inherently evil. >> that will be tweeted, by the way. [laughter] give them a second. [laughter] >> i do believe that taxes are inherently evil. i'd like them and nobody likes the impaired but it will the voters in san antonio that there is no way to sugarcoat this. i am asking you for this tax increase. more than that, i believe in
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you. i believe that may put it in front of you, you can make a decision as to whether or not you want to make this investment. so are you willing to pay $7.81 if we meet you halfway by ensuring accountability, ensuring that we require parents to be involved in their child's education because they're probably the most important shepherds of what happens in a child's life. we require performance audits and we set this with a definitive time from the eight years. in eight years, you get to vote on this again. you can either keep it or leave it based on how it has performed. and we set actual schools that make it transparent. what we will have to decide in texas, especially on the issue of education, because brainpower is so important to
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economic success in the future, is are we willing to make the investment? and if we do, i also believe that we have the right to expect more from everybody in the education ecosystem, from parents to policy makers to a administrators, everybody down . >> mr. cruz, sounds like he is telling the community, you can control it. if you want money for pre-k, you can vote to support or reject. do you have an issue with that? >> i agree with you. i commend mayor caster for taking leadership on an issue that he is passionate about pair and for taking it to the voters of san antonio. i think that is where the important issues of education should be decided come at the state level and the local level. >> you would vote no, however. >> if i were a citizen of san antonio, i would look at the merits of the argument there is a world for taxes and things that government can provide. that is a choice for the citizens of san antonio to make. on the merits, is it the thing that makes sense for them to
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make. if it works, you can look at the results and other communities can make the decisions. one of the reasons i do like federal decisions that are forced from washington all across the country is that different communities have different needs. and what might be a good policy in san antonio may be a terrible policy in laredo or new york city. >> the mayor says that he does not believe taxes are inherently evil but with qualifications. you? >> evil is a strong word. >> it is. and that is what i am asking you. do you think taxes are inherently evil or do you? >> i think taxes are morally neutral. what is done with it can be good or bad. >> let me move on to health care. [laughter] i tried.
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this week, the census bureau that i alluded to earlier, they also talked about the state of health care in this country can it said that texas now has 5.8 million uninsured citizens, down as a percentage of our overall population. now 23% of our overall population is uninsured. we have the most in the country. along with that, i report by stephen murdoch can michael klein said that, if only we would embrace the federal health care reform, we could insure 3 million texans by 2014. in a state with the most citizens uninsured in the country, why would we not try something that at least some people believe would ensure more than 3 million of our fellow citizens? >> right now, the nation is struggling with obamacare and what will happen if it is fully implemented. i think that is one of the central issues at stake in november. it is one of the central issues at stake in the presidential race and in the congressional and senate race progressed the
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fact is that you would vote to repeal. >> i am an answer to the -- i am an enthusiastic vote to repeal. if you look at what is happening with obamacare already, you see small businesses, employers drop health insurance -- talking about dropping health insurance if obama's is care is implemented. if it is fully implemented, i believe, it will lead toward shifting more and more the citizenry to government- provided insurance, to providing -- to moving us toward a single- payer system. he did not go all the way to a single-payer system immediately. i think that is zero -- i think that is what obamacare is headed toward defeat is fully implemented. every nation on earth that has implemented social health care, government-run health care, you have seen poor quality. you have seen rationing. you have seen waiting lines
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provide don't think that is what americans want. and i also think that obamacare was implemented with a government arrogance that was extraordinary. there has been no major social legislation passed in modern times, other than obamacare, that was on a pure party-line vote ran down the throat both of the opposition and of the american people. >> you will double down on the idea that the affordable care act, which has been found constitutional, is socialized medicine. >> i think it is designed to lead as inexorably toward socialized medicine. >> i guess that you have a different point of view. >> i do. let's take a look at what the
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facts are. it has been fascinating to hear the discussion about obamacare over the last couple of years. every time you hear it, it is anecdote after anecdote, year after fear about what will happen, but what people are talking, snippets of conversation here and there. you started with a very good fact, which is that the percentage of folks who actually have health care, not just in texas, but in the united states of the last year has gone up for the first time in a very long time. the reason it has gone up is because now folks who are up to 26 years old can stay on their parents' plan. pre-existing conditions are not some paperwork excuse for an insurance company to deny you benefits that you have earned and paid for. and so the only thing that we have out of obamacare are a
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positive so far been everything else, well, small-business owners, they are worried about it or is there a chilling effect that is happening because of it? there's no empirical evidence for that. it is all about some future that is out there that is painted very darkly. although, i will say that we do have a model to look at and it is massachusetts. it is romneycare. >> i wouldn't vote for that either. but but what we saw in massachusetts was that folks like it and it has worked well and it would be a great thing if the governor would embrace what he accomplished. i would agree with him that it was a good way for massachusetts to go. and in 2015, 2016, 2017, if mr. cruz is elected this year, if he is up for reelection in 2018, i bet that folks will be singing a different tune about obamacare. >> to the specific point that the mayor made about pre- existing conditions and allowing young people to remain
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for a certain time on their parents' health insurance and even governor romney, whom you support for president has said that he would keep some of those things in any health care plan that he would put forward if he were elected president. are you ok with preexisting conditions? are you ok with keeping people on their parents' health care insurance to 26? are there things that you would permit or would repeal the whole thing? >> no. >> so you are against people being able to get insurance despite pre-existing conditions? >> let me be clear. candidates and politicians like to come with goodies print they say we will give you something and it will be great. but they never focused on the cost. my view of how to approach health care reform -- this is a complicated issue that does not admit to a simple band a solution. it is fundamentally different from the approach of president
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obama. i think health care reform should expand markets, expand competition and empower consumers and patients and disempower government bureaucrats from second- guessing the decisions that are made between a patient and a doctor. what does that mean specifically? the three reforms a think would be most important would be, number one, allowing people to purchase health insurance across state lines. why is that? because that would create a true 50-state national market for low-cost catastrophic health care. part of the problem, every time politicians say that every health plan must include the following bills and whistles and they give away all the stuff, it has the inevitable effect of driving the cost of health insurance for everybody. and one of the biggest reasons so many people in texas and nationally don't have health insurance is because it is so expensive. if we had a 250-state national
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market with low-cost catastrophic care, that would expand access. chris so buying across state lines would be number one. what are two and three? >> #2 is sitting in a tax- deferred way to take care of their health needs. i think that has significant impact, both in terms of manpower and consumers and in terms of constraining costs. >> so that is no. 2. >> #3, working to delink health insurance from employment p.m. it is a historical accident that most of us to get -- from employment. it is a historical accident that most of us get our health insurance from our employment. we don't live in the 1940's and 1950's were people go to work for one company for 50 years. if you or i lose our jobs, we don't lose our life insurance, home insurance, car insurance. >> so portability is a concern. >> and insurance is personal and you own it and it travels with you regardless of your job.
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that goes a long way to solving the problem of pre-existing conditions. you're not losing your health care. >> i want the mayor to respond but i ask you two specific questions and i want you to answer them pierre do you support allowing people to buy insurance despite preexisting conditions? do you support the principle of allowing young people to stay on their parents' health insurance until age 26? >> the center those one at a time. let's start with age -- let's answer those one at a time. let's start with age 26. that will increase the cost of insurance coverage for everyone. >> which you do not want to see happen been so i take that as a no. >> it is a no as a government
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mandate. but if you allow people to buy insurance across state lines, some policies will be available that to come if you want to buy this policy and cover your kids up to age 26, you can do so in pay higher premiums. i don't to jack up everyone's premiums because these things are not free. >> men they know or the possibility of that happening are definitely -- happening organically, definitely. >> yes. >> what about preexisting conditions? >> insurance companies should not dump you when you get sick. but if you have demanded that you must be covered regardless of pre-existing conditions, that is not insurance. >> if i go to get insurance and the company wants to deny me, your point of view is they should be able to peer >> yes. and ed will give you a reason why. let's imagine -- yes. and let me give you a reason why appeared let's imagine you have home insurance. wait until you're home burns down and then go by fire insurance. you cannot have a requirement that everyone must be covered regardless of preexisting conditions unless you have an individual mandate that forces everyone against their will to purchase insurance. i disagree with the individual mandate and most texans disagree with a individual mandate and those are intertwined.
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you cannot have the goodies without the cost. >> i have a different view of it. i have a different perspective on it. in fact, the underlying perspective seems to be that everybody will go their own way. when everybody goes their own way, things will work out. especially with something like health care, we need to be more intentional than that. but just to take an example, one of the things that you mentioned is this idea of folks getting low-cost catastrophic insurance, right? so that everybody gets that, a catastrophic coverage -- you have a huge help the event in your life that will be very expensive and you are able to get interest so it will be quite as and -- quite as expensive. but if you look at the reality, for instance, in the hispanic
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community, in our community, how many folks have diabetes or hypertension, every year it is getting worse. we have so many folks who live truly are using the emergency room as their primary care physician. they have the catastrophe. they end up in the emergency room because they go into diabetic shock or they have to get an amputation. my grandmother eventually did. i don't want forced to wait as a state or nation to work with folks until they have that catastrophe. health-wise. when an insurance company says they have a pre-existing condition, i want them to be able to get health care. more than that, we can make it economically workable, as the president has, so they can get that health care. just on that point, we don't want to wait until someone has
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a health catastrophe to say, now, instead of $25,000, it will be $5,000. no. we want to help ensure so folks can get good health care coverage throughout their lives so they don't end up in the emergency room and that health catastrophe, so they can actually be preventative, not just experienced the catastrophe. that is what we ought to aim for is a nation, not the other. >> i have five minutes before i open it up to the audience for questions. you said you don't question whether that is legitimate. but we have two gentlemen up here who are both hispanics. i want to ask you both as individuals and members of the hispanic community in texas. what do you think about immigration that has been kicked down the road. we are finally beginning to talk about it in earnest. can you talk about where you
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think this country ought to go on this subject? >> immigration is an issue that i think, sadly, neither party is serious about. uc both political parties demagogue the issue of immigration, using it to scare people. i think the underlying policy is quite simple. most texans, most americans agree that, number one, we need to get serious about securing our borders. we need to stop talking about it and actually solve the national security and law enforcement challenge of a border that is not secure. and number two, we need to remain in nation that not just welcomes, but celebrates legal
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immigrants. americans by choice is what ronald reagan described. our great strength as a nation is that all of us, our ancestors, came from all of real-world seeking freedom and opportunity and we need to remain a nation that celebrates immigrants and secure our border and gets serious about stopping the problem. >> yet that same president coming in 1986 and instituted a program that was effectively, if not literally, amnesty, which has been criticized by members of your party for opening the floodgates. >> i don't think amnesty is the right approach could i don't think that most texans or most americans support it. i think amnesty is unfair to the millions of legal immigrants to wait years and sometimes the kids in line to come here legally. to reward those who broke the law is fundamentally wrong. >> we know the president put into effect prosecutorial discretion, and wait to address the question of children who
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are undocumented persons in this country. we do not have comprehensive immigration reform in this country. where should we go? >> my hope is that, after this election, the environment in d.c. will be more supportive of a comprehensive immigration reform. of course, we have different views on the subject. i agree with the president's decision to exercise prosecutorial discretion. i also agree what he did for the dreamers. i hope we are able to pass the dream at. >> you are opposed? >> yes. >> but when you look at what is going on out there, the president is getting knocked on both sides. some are knocking him because they say that he deported more folks -- this administration,
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they say, has deported more focused than any other. >> well, the bush administration. >> we know that, since 2004, the number of border patrol agents have doubled in this country and that, president obama, he called for an increase to avert 21,000 border patrol agents. since 2007, revenue going toward border security has increased 55%. and we also see, for instance, in terms of mexicans coming to the united states, that is at net zero right now. to suggest that somehow our borders are not secure, if what that means is are they as secure as we would want them to be? we could always make them more secure, right? we could theoretically have zero people ever coming across the border. but the borders are more secure than they ever have been before.
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>> i guess we could ask if the borders are more secure than they were four years ago. [laughter] >> and then there's this issue of the tone of the debate. i think the fear mongering in the debate. for instance, this issue of folks who are otm, other than mexicans, and know that you and lieutenant governor dewhurst talked about this in the debate. it was mentioned that there were many folks from middle eastern countries who are among the otm's who come to the united states. do you know how many middle eastern country otm's there were? >> i don't know. >> it is less than 0.002% of the boats that came across. it is so low that they could probably fit in this room.
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now, surely be -- we might suggest that one person is one too many, right? which i agree with. at the same time, this is why i said at the beginning of our conversation that there's a larger point here. if we are in some sort of crisis as a nation, the crisis is not any temporal or fiscal issue that we're facing or one policy issue. it is how we address these issues in a reasonable way on both sides. i do agree with you that, on both sides, people have used this issue and others like a pinata politics. they beat it around, turn these issues into cartoons. but on this issue of what it means for our country to have immigrants coming to get immigrants who have been the building blocks of our nation, i really believe we need to take a sober look at it could hope
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we can get comprehensive immigration reform passed. i believe that the dreamers were morally blameless and ought to be allowed to stay here and pursue their dreams of going to college or serving the military were working or whatever. i don't think that coming in the long run, the united states will be well served by being a nation that sends the signal to the world that come even though we are saying we like legal immigrants, we are comfortable with where we are at. the needs of our workforce don't support that. i think the future of our country is stronger if we go in another direction. so my hope is that we can get comprehensive immigration reform passed. >> is there a question? we will have you lining up. do that now while mr. cruz
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speaks. >> let me make a point on what the president did in terms of acting unilaterally. i think it should troublemaker castro and it should trouble democrats. a year ago, president obama said he had no constitutional authority to effectively grant amnesty to 800,000 people who are here illegally. and then, as we got closer to an election year, as we get closer to november, magically, he asserted that constitutional authority. >> shocked to discover the politics show up in an election-year. >> indeed, shocked. i am concerned by unchecked power in the hands of the executive, with that executive is a democrat or republican. -- whether that executive is a democrat or republican. if president obama is right that he has the power to say, it does not matter what our
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federal immigration laws are, i will ignore those laws. and it is not simply prosecutorial discretion. when you register, you are effectively here illegally. if the president can do that, i would be curious what mayor castro would think of a republican president who would begin erasing losses from the books. >> i thought we went through that a couple of years back. [laughter] [applause] >> let's actually talk about that. let's talk about a very specific instance. >> the biggest case in a year as solicitor general is a tragic crime in houston. two teenage girls were horribly murdered. the judicial arm of united nations issued an order to reopen the conviction of 51 murders.
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and the president, george w. bush, signed an order that attempted to order the state courts to obey the world courts. as solicitor general working for greg debora, on behalf of the state of texas, went before the supreme court and said that the president does not have the authority to unilaterally ignore the law. in fact, i use this exact same example. george w. bush is a republican, texas, i work for him and i admire him in many respects, but i fear unchecked executive authority. >> regardless of party. >> the supreme court struck it down. i have not heard a single voice in the democratic party of raising the question of why is it the president has the authority to ignore the law. that is a dangerous precedent. if president obama supports the dream that or anything else, he can push legislation through and have it considered. in san antonio, with the tax increase for increasing pre-
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school, you said to put it to the democratic process. i think that is the weight change should be done, not through executive assertions of a 40. >> through prosecutorial discretion, he said we will prioritize certain cases. he did not say we are writing off the books all of these other immigration cases, right? again, what you're doing is projecting into the future a result, just like with health care that has not happened yet. that is not what he said. process curatorial discretion exist -- prosecutorial discretion, as you know and you are a better attorney dan, exists in every single county courthouse all the way of to the upper levels of our government. is not breaking new ground pin he is not writing off these emigration cases. he is saying that we will
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prioritize those who have committed felonies, who are real criminals because that is how we believe that, with the resources that we have to spend, that we will keep our states safest. we want communities to be saved so we will start with the folks were criminals. >> he did a little more than that. he said we will not prosecute these people. it was not just that we will focus a lot of attention on others. the category people who violated a federal law -- >> and again, he did not write off those cases. he said the map for these two years, while congress has the opportunity, we hope to do something about this and change the landscape of the law. we will have this two-year pause. this is a temporary status. >> i want to apologize in advance. i don't know that i will get to everybody, but we will try. these guys can debate all day
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long, but we will go on. please make them quick questions. >> my question is for both and gentlemen, but more for mr. cruz. as he advocates for spending cuts, there is a country in the world right now that instituted immediate, consistent austerity and that is great britain. in the coalition government, they cut spending dramatically. thus far, they have failed to produce the economic recovery that it was promised to produce. in fact, i think recently, britain has dipped back into recession. so what makes him think that it will work here. >> austerity has not worked well in a lot of places.
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>> your solving the problems they're paired i don't disagree that government spending cuts on their own don't necessarily produce growth. the reason you see spending cuts is because our national debt now exceeds the gross domestic product and you're trying to pull it back from the brink, in terms of growth, my priorities in the usa would be to lead the effort to dramatically shrink the size of our and the standing of the federal government. to get growth going, the most effective levers are regulatory reform and tax reform, both of which are removing impediments from the private sector, from small businesses to create jobs. if we can ease the regulatory burden, if we can use the tax burden, that is how you get gdp growth up. cutting spending is not primarily directed at growth.
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it is primarily directed at pulling in nation back from the brink. >> my name is danny. i want to ask both of you a question about young people in general. the cost of higher education has skyrocketed in the past two decades, as much as 440% occurred but student loan debt has skyrocketed as the well -- as well. last year's college graduates, just half of them were either unemployed or underemployed. what is your message for young people like myself looking into the future in terms of my job prospects and how i will fare in this economy. >> mayor, give this young man hope. [laughter] >> i would say, first, stick with what will be the pay dirt in the 21st century global economy, which is getting an education, getting the knowledge and the technical skills that it takes to succeed.
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my fear is that, in the coming years, folks who have the ability to go to college or technical training or university may choose not to thinking i don't want to incur student debt. first of all, reforms made in the last couple of years have made better for students. secondly, you will never hurt yourself by educating yourself. you will always benefit yourself. so those would generally be my to pieces of advice. >> but, if i can interject, if there's no way i can get a job out there, there is a half-and- half a chance, do i want to put myself through $40,000 in debt doing that? >> there is no question that the job market today is not the job market of america when it was full throttle. but remember that things are getting better. you want to have those skills
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so you can be competitive in the economic marketplace as this recovery continues. >> christopher from dallas. you mentioned immigration waiting list for legal immigration, but these are based on family preferences or highly skilled workers. most undocumented workers to not have these abilities. would you change the system and eliminate the cuban assistance act that allow you to come here with an unfair advantage that others don't have. >> i did not immigrant from cuba. that is not where i came from. >> is it how your father came? >> that is how my father came. there is a rule through this country where we recognize the principle of asylum. we recognize the principle of
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political oppression. my father was imprisoned and tortured and beaten almost to death. my aunt nearly lost her life in jail. for decades if not centuries, we have recognized the political oppression is qualitatively different when you have a dictator and a murderer in power who is torturing and oppressing its people. that is different from people who are coming from economic challenges. we have long recognized that there is a qualitative difference between the two. i would be thrilled to repeal the cuban adjustment act as soon as we don't have an oppressive dictator in cuba who is a pressing and torturing his people. >> my name is judy and i'm from boston. governing involves compromise pin can you share with us what your attitude towards
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compromise with democratic legislators would be if elected? also, if you have or you will be selling the grover norquist pledged which will limit your ability? >> this came up in the indiana senate race where mr. murdoch said explicitly that my version of.com -- my version of compromises when the democrats come over to my side. so where do you fall on this? >> is a very important question. my idea of compromise is the same exact as ronald reagan. president reagan said, what do you to if they ask you half a loaf. you take it. and then you come back for more. i am perfectly happy to compromise and work with anybody, republicans, democrats, independents, libertarians. i have joop before that i will work with marcion's -- if they are willing to shrink the size and power of the federal
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government. i think we're facing a fiscal and economic cliff and we need to solve that problem. i have no interest in going to washington and giving a bunch of cathartic speeches. we're there to fix the problem. that is what texans are looking for, cereus leaders to ensure the opportunity and prosperity that everyone of us has been blessed to enjoy. but that it is therefore our kids and grandkids. on compromise, i am happy to work on an agreement. us say tax reform, i fully support simplifying the tax code, moving to a low uniform but that is paid by everyone can i mean i did everything that i want. if we are moving in a positive direction and events in libya, i would readily take less than 100% of what we want. where republicans have gone wrong.
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so many compromises going backwards. they have compromised in a way that makes the problem worse, that grows government, that increases the debt. i do not support compromise just for the sake of cutting the deal. >> the norquist pledge? yes or no? >> yes. >> 30 seconds? >> you campaign in poetry and govern in prose. it does not sound much like poetry in government these days. it sounds worse. people do not want to compromise. in san antonio, we have shrunk the federal government. the number of employees on our city payroll has shrunk by 4% to 5%. we eliminated positions. everybody talks about ronald reagan -- ronald reagan did not shrink the size of government. government was much bigger when reagan left office than when he started. there is this idea that is created out there that does not
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match the reality. when you get down to local communities where we do compromise, where we make the tough policy decisions, then yes, sometimes you can not do it. >> we are out of time. we are committed to sticking to the schedule. [applause] thank you all for coming. we will see you elsewhere during the day. >> here is a look at some of what we are covering on the c- span network today. at 1230 on c-span, the federalist society previews the upcoming supreme court term. remarks from education secretary arne duncan on c-span 2, the new america foundation looks at child care and education policy.

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